Many bridge players possess a deep burning desire to be a winner, no matter what the cost in terms of money, broken marriages, and sleep deprivation.
Some mad fools are prepared to venture into a world of fire and brimstone by going through the infamous Gates of Hell. This act of sheer folly is motivated by the desire to strike up a partnership with the devil himself.
However, the devil which lurks in the dark shadows of one's local bridge club is not Old Nick, Lucifer, Satan or Beelzebub : it is usually a top class player, whose level of expertise is as sharp as his tongue. Victims, who have this tragic disorder, seem obsessed with the idea of partnering someone who is hell-bent on giving them an eternal roasting. Such an alliance has only one outcome : the sacrifice of a pathetic soul on the altar of his own stupidity.
The victim's vision of obtaining top after top is nothing more than a mirage, a trick of light that conjures up a false reality. Symptoms of the Faustus Follica include a false belief that that devil will improve their skills, and of course their results. Once the folly takes hold, victims become oblivious to the fact that he is only interested in ripping their ego and confidence to shreds, and that his enjoyment is not in the cards but laying into those, who are clearly inferior players and very prone to error.
Indeed, being afflicted with Faustus Follica is no joke. It is a frightening condition which, as many of my colleagues will confirm , is the most extreme form of self-abasement ever to be diagnosed in medical history. Victims inevitably experience intolerable levels of pain, torment, torture and distress. Yet despite the folly of enduring these psychological damaging experiences , they still persist in partnering the devil even though their results go from bad to worse .
Every belief and expectation that " things will get better " is crushed again and again, but the ultimate folly is their failure to recognise that the devil places no value whatsoever on them, or their partnership : he simply sees these desperate souls as ideal candidates for grooming into gimps ......to satisfy his sadistic delight.
God knows how I have tried to " cure " clients with this disorder, but to no avail. Clearly, the power and influence the devil has over these wretched souls is far greater than mine.